We visited Havana recently and the city wowed me. The dramatic history of the city thanks to Spanish and British of older time and American and Russian influence is very interesting. Old Havana looks like a Spanish city attracted many intellects to herself such as Ernest Hemingway. There is bar with his name that apparently he used to visit very often. Some of these charming building are falling apart but who can blame Cuban for not having renovation on top of their list.
I felt like unfortunate situations trapped these people in time. After thirty something years still trying to show the revolution spirit is in the air is surreal. Every where there are photos of Che Guevara ; every where I mean; on the wall, postal cards, and even mugs. I really doubt that a man like him would ever imagined that one day he will be a major icon in Cuba to attract tourists who like to buy his imprinted mug, magnets, plates, ceramics, etc.
So far I visited part of Mexico, Dominican Republic and now Havana. My first impression from people I encountered, including the hotel staff, stranger in street, the bus driver, tour guide , etc is that Cuban are more serious, mostly educated ( education is free in Cuba) and are into politics ( considering how much the government is involved in people everyday life I am not surprised).